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Cal State Fullerton professors receive grants for water resource projects

Phoolendra Mishra and Garrett Struckhoff recipients of WRPI Faculty Research Incentive Award

by Jason WheelerPublished: December 03, 2012 09:30 AM

Phoolendra Mishra and Garrett Struckhoff, two assistant professors of civil and environmental engineering at Cal State Fullerton, have received the Faculty Research Incentive Award this year, awarded by the Water Resources and Policy Initiatives of the California State University. The grants are awarded for projects and issues related to water resources.

The grants are comprised of support and a release from teaching responsibilities for recipients to work on project proposals to funding agencies and organizations for education and training relating to their projects. Over the course of 2012, 25 teachers from 11 California State University campuses have received funding through the program.

Mishra’s project, “Groundwater Contaminant Source Identification,” focuses on creating a new methodology for discovering the sources and causes of groundwater contamination.

“It is evident that as the world’s population continues to grow, the demand for fresh water will continue to increase. Being the major source of fresh water, groundwater contamination poses risk to sustainability and availability of fresh water around the world,” Mishra said. “For a variety of legal and regulatory reasons it is often necessary to determine the release history, location and size of the contaminant source. The goal of this externally funded proposal would be to develop and demonstrate a comprehensive methodology.”

Struckhoff’s project, entitled “Best Management Practices for Water Resource Conservation in a Changing World: Living Laboratory and Hybrid Lecture” focuses on building an undergraduate course curriculum for teaching the management practices used by Southern California water sources.

“These best management practices are in common use by consulting engineering firms that hire our alumni, but we see a lack of information currently in our curriculum to train our graduating students to understand and implement these innovative technologies,” said Struckhoff, who utilizes plant and plant bacteria to clean environmental contamination.

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